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ASB Classic: Amanda Anisimova Overcomes Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova to Make a Triumphant Comeback

<p>The American wildcard After being absent from tennis for eight months, Amanda Anisimova made a big comeback on Monday by defeating Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in straight sets at the Auckland Classic.</p>
<p><img decoding=”async” class=”alignnone wp-image-334493″ src=”×394.jpg” alt=” asb classic amanda anisimova overcomes anastasia pavlyuchenkova to make a triumpha” width=”1266″ height=”665″ title=”ASB Classic: Amanda Anisimova Overcomes Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova to Make a Triumphant Comeback 9″ srcset=”×394.jpg 750w,×538.jpg 1024w,×403.jpg 768w,×79.jpg 150w, 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 1266px) 100vw, 1266px” /></p>
<p>In her first match on the WTA Tour after declaring in May that she would take an extended vacation due to exhaustion and worries for her mental health, Anisimova defeated her skilled opponent 7-5, 6-4.</p>
<p>The 22-year-old, a past semifinalist at the French Open, looked unrusty, playing with the same strength that propelled her to a global rating just outside the top 20 in her teenage years.</p>
<p>Anisimova said in the run-up to the competition that her sabbatical had improved her mental toughness for the demands of the professional circuit.</p>
<p>She stopped playing tennis entirely for four months before easing back into it in September.</p>
<p>She did, however, disclose that she almost skipped her first-round match due to “horrible” shoulder muscle spasms that woke her up.</p>
<p>She said, “I was just so upset that I was the tournament’s wildcard.”</p>
<p>“I was extremely grateful that they gave me the chance to play today, and I really wanted to compete for the tournament as well as for myself.</p>
<p>“I’m proud of myself for coming out here and really pushing myself because up until the last second, I wasn’t sure.”</p>
<p>After taking the first set, Anisimova had treatment on her left upper thigh, which she described as a “little tweak.”</p>
<p>She came out swinging, leading 32-year-old Pavlyuchenkova, a 12-time champion and previous French Open finalist, 5-1 in the second set.</p>
<p>Anisimova, the fifth seed, will take on Marie Bouzkova after her 6-0, 3-6, 6-4 victory over Magdalena Frech.</p>
<p>Lesia Tsurenko, the third-seeded Ukrainian, Emma Navarro, the fourth-seeded American, and Wang Xinyu, the sixth-seeded Chinese player, were the other seeds competing on the first day and they were all successful.</p>
<p>The US Open winner and current world number three, Coco Gauff, will make her debut on Tuesday against Claire Liu, an American who she defeated in her last match.</p>

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